Treptow Park is not a park. The trees are transparently ornamental, their arrangement forced, the open space providing no sense of serenity. The stone walkways issue onto a large, invisible containment cell. A space of congregation, but not of celebration. Flanked by coercive scenes of propaganda, feelings of fear and uneasiness overwhelm any suggestion of victory.
A sunny start but bloomin eck it was chilly. Explored the neighbourhood further on foot, brekkie in Kollwitzplatz http://www.360berlin.net/en/prenzlauer-berg-2/kollwitzplatz. With a massive tower (1st a water tower, then Nazi prison in the war and new chi chi apartments) it’s the focal point of Prenzlauer Berg (old east’s most poncified neighbourhood, think Nottinghill but not really).
The pm we sadled up for an afternoon exploring.
Made it to Treptow park and the massive Soviet war memorial - culture & history in one. All my buttons pressed in an impressive, monolithic, and a little intimidating (by design) package. It’s also a cemetery to 7000 red army troops. Renovated a decade ago it’s a stunning sight commemorating The Great Patriotic War 1941-45 (It was never know as WWII 1939-45 to the Russians).
Propaganda of the highest order and not to be missed.
The weary ride home felt long - particularly on delicate bums…
This one took so long I got sunburned on my left foot. It was worth it though. It’s of my local suburban railway station which acts as a gateway to my favourite park called Treptower Park which has some beautiful little foresty bits by the river which are amazing for running when it’s hot and green in summer or peaceful and snowy in winter. I’ve had some spiritual running experiences here!
Family statue, Volkspark Wuhlheide, Berlin by Forest Pines Via Flickr: Volkspark Wuhlheide (Wulheide People’s Park) was developed during the Weimar period; but this statue looks suspiciously like a wholesome socialist family of the DDR, during whose rule the park was renamed Pionierpark Ernst Thälmann. The half-missing head does make the family look less wholesome and slightly creepy.
If you had to stay in a room with another country and NOT have any sort of confrontation, which country would it be?
He’s pretty easy going and I don’t like conflict so our communication skills work well with one another. We really had contact about 50 years ago after the Second World War, because Germany reached out and genuinely wanted reconciliation for the events that happened. In this world, you don’t see people admitting their wrongs and asking for forgiveness from people. It was a genuine act and I’ve felt a lot of respect and admiration towards him for being so thoughtful. Just last year during our meeting in the Bundestag we all went to Treptower Park and laid flowers down on the monument to Soviet Soldiers. So, as people, we have a pretty good acquaintanceship… Sadly, our governments, not so much. We started out really well after my independence, but once Lukashenka took office it really went downhill, since he’s a part of the EU and the EU is rather upset with my government. We made a culture exchange agreement in 1994, and I like to think that with our rather cold relation, Belarus does very well receiving his culture. I think the highlight of German culture is the German Culture Week, along with the International Book Fair in Minsk! So we see each other decently often since the embassy is rather involved and I find it fitting to visit yearly.
This place always calms me…humbles me…fills me with gratitude…and puts everything into perspective. #darksoulgirl #massgrave #walkingwithghosts #militarycemetery (at Soviet War Memorial (Treptower Park))